APAC digital marketing agencies the world’s most ‘progressive’

  • APAC agencies more open to new tech, also the most expensive
  • Clients remain the major problem, in a number of ways
APAC digital marketing agencies the world’s most ‘progressive’

DIGITAL marketing agencies from the Asia Pacific region appear to be the most ‘progressive’ in the world, according to a new survey, with ‘progressive’ here taken to mean that they are planning to outsource work more and will change their CMS/ digital marketing platform more than agencies in other regions.
The results of the survey were announced by Kentico Software, which provides an all-in-one CMS (content management system), e-commerce, and online marketing platform.
The survey was conducted by independent global research agency Millward Brown, and looked at the opportunities and aspirations of today’s digital marketing agency decision makers, Kentico Software said in a statement.
The survey interviewed 300 senior managers and directors of digital agencies across the Asia Pacific region, Europe, North America and the United Kingdom, it added.
The survey found that of the agencies in Asia Pacific surveyed:

  • 7% were planning on investing in new software;
  • 14% were planning on investing in new hardware;
  • 20% were planning in outsourcing more work;
  • 21% were planning on changing their CMS/digital marketing platforms; and
  • 17% were planning on acquiring another company (and 18% were planning on merging with a new company)

“That Asia Pacific digital marketing agencies lead other major markets in investment and expansion plans in 2016 illustrates both the health of the local sector and the increased importance organisations are placing on reaching their target audiences through digital channels,” said Kentico Software’s Asia Pacific Operations director Wayne Jasek.
According to the global study, the vast majority of digital agencies are expecting high growth – 90% of higher-performing agencies plan to hire new people; and 71% of agencies overall expect to invest more money in software.
Half of the agencies surveyed plans to outsource more of their projects, while slightly less than half hopes to grow through acquisition.
Those that plan to hire more people and invest more money in software and hardware have especially high hopes, Kentico Software said.
Challenges remain
According to the survey, the greatest challenges facing digital agencies around the world are:

  • Competition: 80%
  • Clients’ lack of understanding of digital marketing: 78%
  • Clients expecting a high volume of work at low cost: 78%
  • Clients acquiring but failing to use digital marketing tools: 73%
  • Not enough clients: 58%

Asia Pacific agencies, in particular, face challenges around not having enough quality staff (14%), being unable to complete the majority of their projects on time (11%), and being unable to deliver profitable projects (12%), Kentico Software said.
People the key
When asked about the greatest contributors to success, the digital agencies surveyed report that it came down to people – specifically, clients being able to clearly communicate what they need (No 1), employees understanding the task at hand (No 2), and clients being willing and able to cooperate (No 3).
“This new survey suggests that digital agencies maintain a positive outlook for 2016 and plan to make important investments in people and technology,” said Kentico founder and chief executive officer Petr Palas.
“They continue to focus on solving the most pressing digital marketing challenges,” he added.
Digital agencies are most interested in hiring graphic designers, according to the survey. They are being paid more than developers and marketers, particularly at higher-performing agencies.
Interestingly, when it comes to client fees, Asia Pacific agencies lead the way with the top average project prices by region:

  • Asia Pacific: US$190,000
  • United Kingdom: US$125,000
  • United States: US$105,000

The Digital Agencies 2016 Report includes top areas of investment, technology, and more. To request a copy of the report, go here.
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The digital/ mobile revolution: Malaysian marketers are laggards
Singapore lags in digital advertising measurement: IAB study
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